Home » EDU - Education Committee » EDU Supported Activities » AAI Introductory Immunology Course (July 9-14, 2011)
AAI Introductory Immunology Course (July 9-14, 2011)

University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia
Course Directors: Terri M. Laufer and Christopher A. Hunter


Jagne Ya Yankey, MSc Student,
Medical Research Council (MRC) Laboratories, Fajara, The Gambia
“I want to express my sincere appreciation to both the IUIS and the AAI for granting me the opportunity to take part in this course. It was intensive but comprehensive and covered the basics of immunology and a lot of other interesting topics in the field of immunology. I had the chance to interact with other students and professionals from different levels and works of life both on topics relating to the course and my personal work as well.
The course lectures delivered by the able presenters have greatly impacted on my understanding of the basics of immunology and have also enhanced my research knowledge.  The materials supplied by the organizers and the references given by most of the speakers will go a long way in helping me understand the immunology involved in my day-to-day research work and a continuum of my journey towards having an MSc in Immunology, and in the long run, a PhD.
I look forward to sharing this experience with other researchers in the field of immunology especially in The Gambia. My organization hosts researchers from all over the world and could be a suitable ground for sharing my gains from this course.
The main reason of my wanting to take part in this course was to further add on to my immunology background and to have an opportunity to experience first hand a basic course in immunology before starting my MSc in immunology. This has been fulfilled by the comprehensive lectures delivered by the various speakers.
I would like to conclude by thanking the local organizing committee for a successful and well organized program and the able speakers for their great lectures.”

Chen Min, PhD student 
Laboratoire d’Immunologie Faculté de Médecine, Nancy Université, Nancy, France
“When I was a student in my Faculty of Medicine in Zhongnan Hospital at Wuhan, Hubei, China, some years ago, I received basic training in immunology in my first years. It was an initiation to this large field which is moving so fast and clearly was not sufficient for specialized studies in Immunology. My PhD training in Nancy is focused on a topic at the border between Hematology and Immunology. I was honored and lucky to be selected by IUIS and AAI to attend this introductory course. Furthermore, they kept me on the list of selected students although I had visa and family problems last year.
My trip was long because of plane connections problems but very valuable. The city of Philadelphia is so beautiful, as well as the University of Pennsylvania. The course was well organized, with world-renowned immunologists speakers and a dense schedule. Accommodation at the hotel was very comfortable. 
Part I of the course offered a detailed introduction to basic immunology and part II comprised a series of more clinically oriented lectures. At this course, I acquired a better understanding of the immune system, including recent progress in basic immunology, the newest advances in clinical immunology and some of its applications in medicine. This new knowledge is very important for my PhD training, and even more for my future career as a medical doctor or a researcher. In my opinion, the more memorable lectures, were given by Dr. Julie Blander on dendritic cells and Dr. Gary Koretzky on signaling in the immune system. Their lectures were simple, clear and so interesting.
Another asset was the communication between participants from different countries during the course! Some were medical doctors, others pharmaceutical and industrial researchers, etc. After our discussions, I acquired so much more knowledge in Immunology and I feel I have a clearer view of my future career.
I would like to thank IUIS and AAI for supporting my travel and my stay in Philadelphia, and for giving me the opportunity to attend this very special training course in fundamental and medical immunology.”

Manish Mourya, PhD student
HLA laboratory, Dept of Transplant Immunology and Immunogenetics
All India Institute of Medical Sciences
Ansari Nagar, New Delhi
“The course was very well designed and covered various new aspects of basic and clinical immunology. Few lectures on Autoimmunity, Genetics Approaches to Immune–Mediated Disease (Jhon Cho) and Transplantation (Jonathan Maltzman) were directly related to the research projects that I am associated with. These talks clarified my concepts further.  Various other talks were focused on Immunization (Jordan Orange), Lymphocyte Homeostasis (Michael Cancro), T and B cell Tolerance (Andrew Caton), Cytokines (Christopher Hunter), Trafficking (Fiona Debes), Signalling in the immune system (Gary Koretzky) and MHC Restriction and thymic selection (Terri Laufer).
 All lectures were very interactive and allowed discussions which provided me an opportunity to learn from the teaching faculty. The course content was kind of a toolkit of principles and techniques in Immunology, which every researcher would require throughout the scientific career. For instance, I learned a simple but effective way to verbalize different orientations of concepts and facts to understand various topics of immunology. I consider myself fortunate to have had this opportunity. At my stage of research career, this course gave me an ideal platform to abreast myself with so many topics of immunology is such a short duration.
It was also a good opportunity for me to interact with other trainees from various research centers and to know about the focus of research that they are pursuing in their respective countries. Overall, this was an extremely useful course and a great learning experience towards improving my thinking of research in immunology. Interactions with participants and scientific faculties were beneficial. It gave me an opportunity to invite comments and suggestions on my current research work. I feel that I have learned a great deal, not only in the subject of immunology, but also in the way of presentation and how to interpret the translational potential of research in basic and clinical immunology.
I would like to say thanks to Dr. Michelle Letarte and Dr. Mary Litzinger for their kind support and considering me for this course. I will always remain indebted to them. I also acknowledge Prof. Narinder Mehra for recommending my candidature for this course and Dr. Uma Kanga for encouraging me to join this course and for providing constant guidance and support. I also wish to convey sincere thanks to the teaching faculty of the course.”   
Chen Min,  Michelle Hogan,  Manish Mourya and Jagne Ya Yankey